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Category: Chancellor

Beloit College mandates COVID-19 booster shots while UW-Madison starts collecting booster data

Wisconsin State Journal

UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank told a faculty committee during a Monday meeting that she didn’t know what percentage of the campus community is boosted beyond those who received it at University Health Services. The university will be encouraging students and staff to report if they have been boosted off-campus to get a better picture of booster status across UW-Madison.

UW-Madison starts search for next chancellor with a 21-member search committee

Wisconsin State Journal

Interim University of Wisconsin System President Tommy Thompson and UW Board of Regents President Ed Manydeeds on Thursday identified 21 people across the UW-Madison campus and broader Madison community to serve on a committee searching for Rebecca Blank’s successor. Blank departs next summer to become president of Northwestern University.

Kathleen Gallagher: Will Rebecca Blank’s successor as UW-Madison Chancellor help the university become a global innovation hub?

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

By all accounts, University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank brought much-needed administrative skills to an organization that had taken its share of hits.

But now that she’s headed to the top job at Northwestern University the future of the state’s flagship university — and in some sense, of the state itself — hangs on one key question:

Will the Board of Regents bring in another administrative guru or will it seek out a leader who can finally unlock the potential we all know is there? Someone who can oversee the translation of UW-Madison’s world-class technology into world-class applications for the global marketplace.

What do UW-Madison students want in the next chancellor?

The Capital Times

Next summer, Blank will take on a new role as president of Northwestern University, and a new leader will eventually take the reins at UW-Madison. While students on campus had mixed reactions to this week’s announcement, ranging from excitement to disinterest, some shared personal memories of Blank. Many also felt hopeful about the change.

UW-Madison Chancellor leaving for Northwestern


“Northwestern is a school that I have known and admired for years. Its reputation as a top-rated educational and research institution has grown each decade,” Blank wrote. “It will be my mission to make sure the institution’s reputation and quality continues to accelerate.”

Chancellor Blank reflects on achievements and the future of UW-Madison in State of the University address

The Daily Cardinal

Blank highlighted UW-Madison’s designation as a “Green Ribbon School,” the first of the Big Ten to earn such an award. Reducing environmental impacts and costs, improving the health and wellness of faculty and staff and providing effective environmental and sustainability education are components considered in the selection of Green Ribbon schools.

Chancellor Rebecca Blank to leave UW-Madison at end of academic year

The Daily Cardinal

Blank has been with UW-Madison since 2013. Prior to her tenure at UW-Madison, Blank worked in three different presidential administrations, was dean of the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan and was a member of Northwestern University’s faculty as the director of the Joint Center for Poverty Research.

Updated: Rebecca Blank announces departure from UW, set to become Northwestern president

The Capital Times

The university announced Monday morning that Blank will become the next president of Northwestern University starting in summer 2022, where she will make history as the institution’s first woman president. She will replace long-time president Morton Schapiro, who assumed leadership in 2009 and announced his departure from Northwestern in March.

Opinion: Rebecca Blank’s exit a huge loss — and poses an even bigger challenge

The Capital Times

Blank, who announced Monday she is leaving to become president of Northwestern University in 2022, was named chancellor here in February 2013 when she was acting secretary of commerce under President Obama. Now she is leaving, and the consensus among insiders I spoke with Monday was that (a) she’s done an excellent job of navigating UW through exceptionally challenging times and (b) finding a replacement of her stature may prove profoundly difficult.

Opinion | The University of Wisconsin, Race and History

The New York Times

Recent coverage of the University of Wisconsin-Madison asserts that students and administrators are overly sensitive and reactionary, falsely pursuing small, insignificant symbols, rather than supporting significant goals of racial equity and not maligning an alumnus.

UW-Madison reports 90% of campus fully vaccinated even without vaccine mandate

Wisconsin State Journal

UW-Madison reported on Thursday that nine out of every 10 members of the campus community are fully vaccinated — even without mandating students and employees to get the shot.  “I’m proud of our students and employees for taking this important step to protect themselves and others,” Chancellor Rebecca Blank said in an announcement. “And I’m grateful to our staff, who worked tirelessly to achieve these results.”

University of Wisconsin in standoff with legislature over mask mandate

The Hill

A top university official in Wisconsin is butting heads with state Republican legislators over who has the authority to impose COVID-19 restrictions on campus.

Just hours after a Wisconsin state legislature committee on Tuesday required all University of Wisconsin schools to receive permission before issuing new coronavirus guidance, University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank reinstated her campus’s indoor mask mandate.

UW-Madison ‘deeply sorry’ for scheduling first day of class on Rosh Hashanah

Wisconsin State Journal

“This is an overlap which we should have identified when schedules were being set,” Blank said in the campuswide email. “Our process didn’t work in this instance and for that I’m deeply sorry. The first day of classes is a significant occasion and especially so this year as we return to in-person instruction — after last year, many students want the excitement and sense of belonging that comes with the first day of classes.”

Here’s how Wisconsin defends its AD hiring process against charges it ignored diverse voices

Wisconsin State Journal

UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank solicited feedback from a select number of voices on what qualities and characteristics in the next Badgers athletic director mattered to them. School officials have declined to reveal who was invited to offer input, but it has emerged that Blank held listening sessions with Badgers coaches, some UW players and a group dedicated to equity and diversity in the athletic department.

UW says secrecy needed in AD search; open records advocate says there’s ‘no evidence’ to support that

Wisconsin State Journal

UW is more than six weeks into its search for Barry Alvarez’s successor to lead the athletic department, an enterprise with an annual budget of more than $130 million. The school has been silent on whether any lessons from the failed presidential search were learned, but it is operating with a similar degree of secrecy.

Opinion: UW-Madison chancellor and state legislators use digital dodges to hide records from the public

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

In March, The Washington Post reported that University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank sought to move a conversation around the COVID-19 pandemic and students returning to campus in the fall to a private portal used by presidents and chancellors of the 14 Big Ten universities.

Some colleges want faculty to teach more courses, citing budget problems

Washington Post

It was a comment to that effect by Rebecca Blank, the chancellor at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, that helped ignite the debate in her state over faculty course loads. Blank started a political firestorm by saying that, when top faculty got job offers from other institutions, she sometimes reduced the number of courses they had to teach as a way to get them to stay.

New Leadership For the Big Ten Universities: The Glass Ceiling Is Cracking


With the appointments of Whitten and Wilson, five Big Ten universities will now be headed by women. Joan Gabel is president of the University of Minnesota; Kristina Johnson is president of The Ohio State University; and Rebecca Blank is the Chancellor of the University of Wisconsin. Three other Big Ten campus heads are Black: Johnathan Holloway, appointed in 2020 at Rutgers: Darryll Pines named president of the University of Maryland also in 2020; and Robert Jones who became Chancellor of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2016.

UW chancellor Rebecca Blank understands the importance of hiring a capable replacement for retiring AD Barry Alvarez

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Chancellor Rebecca Blank understands the importance hiring the right person to replace University of Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez.

“Leadership matters,” Blank told reporters Wednesday after UW officials announced the formation of a nine-member search committee. “And leadership matters for maintaining the culture and the ethos and the quality of programs we have here.

Why the U.S. is rethinking its approach to poverty


Quoted: Lawmakers in the U.S. have for years debated how to track poverty, and child poverty in particular. Now, in the midst of a pandemic, when the country is caught in a deep recession that has forced families deeper into financial difficulty amid widening inequalities, “it’s not surprising” that politicians have found renewed interest in curbing this hardship, said Rebecca Blank, a macroeconomist who worked on anti-poverty policy for the the Clinton and Obama administrations and now serves as chancellor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.